Alec Guinness

Born April 2, 1914, in London, Alec Guinness was perhaps the consummate English actor on the stage and in films for nearly six decades until his death on Aug. 5, 2000, in Middlesex, England.

Perhaps best known as the Jedi knight Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars (1977), Guinness enjoyed a distinguished movie career that dated back to the early 1930s. He won a Best Actor Oscar in 1957 for his memorable portrayal of an obsessed British commander in director David Lean's The Bridge on the River Kwai.

Guinness' other classic portrayals include roles in two more Lean classics, Lawrence of Arabia (1962) and Doctor Zhivago (1965). He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 1959.